Questions tagged [colons]

Questions related to the use of the colon (":") in English.

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A colon or a comma in alternative questions

Which punctuation mark should be used before the second part of the alternative question? Should it be a colon or a comma? Eg: What do you like best: pears or apples? or What do you like best, pears ...
-1 votes
1 answer
68 views

What is the correct punctuation to use in this sentence?

A strong adaptation of the metered billing models by the leading Software-as-a-Service providers demonstrate the advantages such billing models bringing to all stakeholders of the service: the service ...
1 vote
2 answers
52 views

Quotation marks vs colon & comma vs dash (dialogue)

I'm trying to write the following dialogue in one sentence and here's what I have: If she asks "Why?" tell her "Something came up." If she asks: Why?-tell her: Something came up. ...
0 votes
2 answers
148 views

Colon versus separate sentences

They do not hesitate in bending the truth however they see fit to their cause. At times they are rigorous and precise; at times they just play dumb. versus They do not hesitate in bending the ...
3 votes
2 answers
6k views

A question regarding colon usage twice in a title

In the article title below, can the second colon be replaced with some other punctuation? Description of the eurotarget cohort: A european collaborative project on targeted therapy in renal cell ...
3 votes
2 answers
201 views

Use of punctuation in complex list with two sets of appositives

How would you punctuate the sentence below? Is it okay the way it is? I've never seen a sentence that introduced more than one list with a colon. I considered just taking out the colons. I also ...
1 vote
1 answer
54 views

Is there a name for this format - '5:number :: k: ? '? [duplicate]

Is there a name for this format - 5:number :: k: ? ? The question mark in the above poses a question. The answer is supposed to be found out by looking the relation of previous pair. In this case ...
0 votes
0 answers
31 views

Punctuation marks just before colon or semi-colon [duplicate]

Is it possible to use punctuation marks such as commas, periods, and question marks just before colons or semi-colons? The error appears when accessing some URLs, e.g.: List items ... Can I set ...
0 votes
1 answer
28 views

Is given by(:) <eqn>; acquires the form of(:) <eqn> [closed]

Does one need to put a colon in the following cases? The equation of motion is given by: <eqn> The equation of motion takes / acquires the form of: ...
0 votes
2 answers
323 views

Which is the proper way to use a colon? [duplicate]

My homework key says that a is the correct answer, but I'm unsure why. How does the addition of "three props" change anything? In other words, how do I recognize when to apply this rule:     ...
0 votes
1 answer
49 views

Can I place a modifier after a colon?

Can I place a modifier after a colon? For example: She opened the door, planning to go outside. vs She opened the door: planning to go outside.
-1 votes
3 answers
127 views

A colon vs. A dash in a sentence

I came across this question while studying for the SAT. After World War I, Percy Spencer was hired to work in the research _____ later known as Raytheon Manufacturing. A) lab of American Applicance ...
0 votes
2 answers
69 views

Period vs. Colon? [closed]

I came across this question while studying for the SAT. What the humanities teach are valuable skills. These include the ability to think critically; to construct, analyze, and respond to arguments; ...
0 votes
0 answers
146 views

"This leads to the question" followed by a comma or a colon

I am saying something along the lines of "this leads to the question, why does x happen" or "this brings up an interesting question, why does x happen" but I'm not sure if it ...
17 votes
5 answers
86k views

What is the correct punctuation after "as follows"?

I am consistently confused by by the usage of "as follows", in particular, I don't know if I should end "as follows" with a period, or with a colon. Should I always use a colon, or ...
0 votes
1 answer
38 views

What is the second 'of' referring to in this sentence?

But it was a vision of democracy: of a San Francisco run by its people, and not the royalty who dance at the Fairmont. Apparently, some words are left out in the sentence. I have come up with two ...
26 votes
4 answers
70k views

Punctuation after "P.S."

Somewhere in the craggy quagmire of my memory, I seem to recall that the nuns of my grade school days taught me that a P.S. (post script) is followed by a colon, i.e. P.S.: Alas, the periods after ...
26 votes
5 answers
57k views

Sentences ending with both a colon and a question mark

How should sentences that end with both a colon and a question mark be formed? Two examples are below, both questions, but one in which the colon presents a piece of information and the other in which ...
0 votes
0 answers
41 views

Punctuation in a bulleted list, title and description

I'm making documention for a piece of software and I need to write multiple lists, namely menus and functions of the software. Currently items are formatted this way: • File ◦ New – ...
0 votes
1 answer
46 views

Is a period ever allowed at the end of a sentence that precedes a direct quotation?

Via Google search and consulting the Chicago Manual of Style, I have discovered that a colon not a period is supposed to precede a quotation when that quotation is a complete sentence or an ...
0 votes
1 answer
2k views

Is it okay to use 'to name a few' with a colon

Is the following sentence correct? The list had a variety of foodstuffs: oranges, apples, bananas and sardines to name a few. Is it okay to use the phrase 'to name a few' with a colon, and also do I ...
0 votes
1 answer
287 views

Capitalisation after colon in British English

From the BBC News website: Truss: Ground should have been laid for tax cuts Shouldn't the first letter after the colon be lowercase? According to Grammarly: In British English, the first letter ...
-1 votes
1 answer
56 views

When ending clause in a comma, which is followed by a colon, should there be a space in-between [closed]

Say that I am giving an introductory clause with a list of things, using the colon. If I also use a secondary clause, by way of a comma to explain the first clause, do I separate the comma and colon ...
0 votes
1 answer
33 views

colon usage before 'not to' [duplicate]

As I understand it, one of the uses of colon is where what succeeds the colon expands on or explains what precedes the colon. (1) The weight of homework from children's shoulders is then taken off: ...
0 votes
4 answers
461 views

Do you use a semicolon or colon before the word “that” in a sentence?

I just wanted to ask if a semicolon or colon is appropriate before the word “that” in a sentence. For example, I want to tell him that maybe it is the fact that I have been guarded every second of ...
0 votes
0 answers
25 views

Semicolon, comma, vs colon in list of size two

I have a sentence here. "The different types of switchgrass fall into two categories: upland and lowland." Can I replace the colon with a comma? Tonally, it sounds alright, but is it allowed ...
0 votes
2 answers
217 views

Using colon and semi-colon in a list

I saw this sentence structure on this document online: Application for a Social Security Card. Can you tell me why there is no "period" in this structure? Where can I learn how to use a ...
0 votes
0 answers
32 views

Can I end a quote/dialogue with a colon?

If a character is introducing something, say, a PowerPoint presentation, how should I punctuate their speech? Can I use a colon? For example: "We have proof. Just take a look at this:" He ...
0 votes
0 answers
55 views

If there is no reporting verb, would you still use comma in these constructions?

Usually, after a reporting verb, there is bound to be a comma, but what if the constructions are as follow: As if waiting for me to say that one sentence, Cornelia followed up with a request, “Welp, ...
0 votes
1 answer
246 views

Is it okay to put a colon after an acronym? [duplicate]

For example, when writing a list of fields to be filled e.g. Name: D.O.B.: Address: Is the colon after D.O.B. correct?
0 votes
0 answers
200 views

Can I use a question mark for a list after a colon?

For example, After the incident, I was no longer sure who to blame: Ethan, Michael, or Jake? Or is there a better way to phrase this sentence?
-1 votes
1 answer
87 views

10 colons in 3 sentences in the 1928 Episcopal Nicene Creed: Why? How to parse?

Below is the text from The Book of Common Prayer (1928). I have long-wondered why it is written with this punctuation. Perhaps there is no definitive answer to that question. But surely you can parse ...
22 votes
4 answers
8k views

Should the first word after a colon be capitalized?

Should the first word after a colon be capitalized? Which of the following is correct? For example: This. For example: this.
0 votes
0 answers
25 views

Question about capitalization after a colon, as well as a few others going on in an otherwise-unimportant sentence I wrote [duplicate]

Not exactly a life-or-death situation here, it's just a YouTube comment I'm in the process of typing in a discussion on movies, the MCU, and the MCU's version of Spider-Man. Sometimes, I write a ...
2 votes
2 answers
5k views

Can you use a colon to introduce just a single item instead of a list?

Colons are usually used to introduce a list of some kind after an independent clause; however, would it work for a single item? For example, can you write For 3 years, I ate hamburgers: my friend's ...
0 votes
0 answers
34 views

Is my use of a colon correct. If it is correct, is the sentence itself structured okay?

The traditional narrative is composed of two types of characters: dramatic characters, which are characters that see huge changes to their personality or core beliefs, and static characters, which are ...
1 vote
1 answer
60 views

Comma at the End of a List Following a Colon

Is the following sentence written correctly? Bob's three favorite colors: black, red, and blue, are Emma's least favorite colors. Specifically, I'm asking about the comma following blue.
0 votes
1 answer
46 views

Question regarding combining two independent clauses using colons [duplicate]

After doing research on the proper way of combining two independent clauses using colons, I wanted to confirm that the examples below are using them correctly. From my research, the second independent ...
9 votes
7 answers
13k views

Colons after a single word (e.g. "Example:")

Everywhere I look, I seem to be finding examples of colons being used after a single word. "Examples: The dog is brown. The cat is white." "Recommended: Take this twice a week. Not recommended: ...
0 votes
3 answers
323 views

Question regarding comma vs. colon

Consider the following sentence: In 2013 Tallinn, Estonia, instituted fare-free rides for city residents (becoming the largest city in the world to do so), but car use in Tallinn has only slightly ...
0 votes
1 answer
43 views

Is it correct to use a comma before naming a list of items in a sentence? [closed]

The question is about the first comma use in the sentences below. I have not seen such comma-punctuation in a sentence that continues with naming several listed items. Is the first comma in these ...
0 votes
0 answers
47 views

How do I introduce a quoted clause within an independent clause?

How do we introduce a quoted clause within an independent clause? For example, when talking about why we say, "John passes away or passed away." How do we write it in a sentence? My sentence ...
-2 votes
2 answers
63 views

Proofreading for punctuation [closed]

His movies took the world by storm and set important conversations into motion #1[,] from criticizing domestic violence #2[,] which he had been a victim of #3[,] to advocating for free speech #4[,] a ...
1 vote
2 answers
13k views

Colon Before a List of Questions

Is the use of the colon correct in this sentence? She pushed the thought aside because she didn't want to ask herself questions like: Where did he go? Was he even real? Was she going crazy? She ...
3 votes
1 answer
1k views

Colon between "that is" and formal definition

Is it appropriate to use "that is" followed by a colon when defining something formally? I have the following example: Let γ be the set of groups that hold variables accessed by C, that is: ...
1 vote
3 answers
104 views

How would one correctly place punctuation marks in this sentence?

Moth-like, the people buzzed about: walking, driving, directing— each to their own light. I'm not sure whether each comma, colon, dash and hyphen are used correctly here. Please help! Also, this ...
0 votes
1 answer
17 views

Punctuation usage

Referent power means the ability of a leader to influence his followers and instill in them respect, loyalty, admiration, affection and a desire to gain approval. Do I need to use punctuation after '...
0 votes
1 answer
101 views

Which is better here, colon or dash?

Their style favors texture and timbre over more familiar and comforting musical elements; there is no beat, melody, or rhythm – only techno-cacophony. Can I switch the dash for a colon, like this? ...
-1 votes
1 answer
69 views

Colon Use or Not

I listened to the song. It went: The man in the hat is crazy. The man in the hat is.... Should there be a colon after 'went'? Or not?
0 votes
1 answer
83 views

How to interpret two clauses separated by a semicolon, then followed with a colon

If two clauses separated by a semicolon are then followed with a colon, does the colon apply to only the second clause, after which it appears, or does it apply to both clauses being considered as a ...

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